Satellite clubs are a £49 million National Lottery funded Sport England initiative; they act as extensions of community sports clubs, which use different venues such as a secondary schools or colleges to offer a range of sports to young people who may not be regularly active, or lack the confidence to join a sports club.
Amber attended the netball satellite club at Thorp Academy delivered by Ryton Ladies Netball Club, and is now taking part every week.
Amber said: “I joined the Ryton Ladies Club about two years ago because some of my friends were going to it. I was playing some netball before, but now I can play regularly and I really enjoy it. I have also started to do some umpiring and hope to take a coaching qualification soon. I didn’t expect to win the award but I’m really pleased with it.”
Providing young people with a solid foundation in the skills they need to progress to playing sport within their community sports club, satellite clubs offer an invaluable experience. By 2017, every secondary school in Tyne & Wear will have been offered a satellite community sports club on its site. Satellite clubs are delivered by community sports clubs supported by Tyne & Wear Sport and national governing bodies of sport.
Chris Kirkland, Faculty Lead of PE at Thorp Academy said, "Ryton Netball has been a fantastic addition to our community offer. Working as a Strategic partner with Thorp Academy the club has been able recruit over 30 girls. It has provided excellent avenues not only in developing skill level, fitness and competition but also provided the girls with opportunities to develop many important life skills. The work and support that the coach, Fern, is giving to the club is testament to all its achievements both in and around the community."
Sport England’s Executive Director for Community Sport, Mike Diaper, said: “I’m delighted that Amber has been recognised for her outstanding commitment and achievement in sport. Satellite clubs offer young people the chance to learn something new, uncover hidden depths and realise new skills. Amber has met this challenge head on and I hope she continues to be an ambassador for the sport in Gateshead.”
Amber is one of almost 300,000 young people who have attended more than 6,900 satellite clubs across England since 2012. Two thirds of the young people benefiting from the clubs report that they would not be playing sport in their own time if it were not for their satellite club.